"It's difficult to admit the obvious"
political world

All About Poland: Facts, Figures, Documents

Jan Paczkis|Friday, October 30, 2009

This work, written shortly after the fall of Poland in 1939, is essentially a mini-encyclopedia of interwar Poland. It includes the "miracle of Gdynia", in which Poland transformed a fishing village into a major port in ten years. In 1924, Gdynia handled 58 ships; in 1938 nearly 13,000 ships. (pp. 184-185).

Jozef Retinger, who was General Sikorski's secretary, wrote the following about the Jewish problem in Poland: "There is no peasant or farming class, and there are no masses of working men. The Jews in Poland are typified by the small, even petty middleman...But in countries which have a preponderance of agricultural population, the concentration of two-thirds of the Jewish population within the cities and Jewish ownership of two-thirds of the trade and one-fourth of industry and handicrafts cannot but lead to perturbations in the economic structure of the State. In this way the natural expansion of the Gentile population has been inhibited and stopped...On the other hand, according to the calculations of Jewish statisticians, there are a million Jews in Poland without any sound means for earning a living. In such conditions, the only solution for this burning question is that offered by emigration." (pp. 66-67).

Ukrainian complaints about the universality of Polish-Ukrainian bilingual schools were exaggerations. There were, in addition to 3,066 such schools, 507 Ukrainian-language schools of various types in 1937-1938. (p. 193). And, perhaps alluding to German claims that all Polish culture is nothing more than copied German culture, Retinger elaborated on such things as the essential differences between Polish Gothic and that of Western Europe. (pp. 103-105). Contrary to those (e. g. Simon Segal) who bad-mouthed Polish agriculture, Retinger defended its achievements, and pointed out that: "Poland ranks third in the world's rye and potatoes production, and second in the production of flax and hemp seed." (p. 112).

This work is useful in debunking the wave of revisionist claims that have been dusted off in conjunction with the recent 70th anniversary of the 1939 war. Contrary to the Russian charge about the existence of a belligerent Polish-German agreement against Russia, Retinger makes it obvious that Poland adhered to the League of Nations formula, in which all international disputes are to be settled by peaceful means only. (p. 87). Consistent with this, Poland had signed nonaggression pacts with Germany in 1934 (valid through 1944) and the Soviet Union in 1932 (valid through 1945). (For texts of these agreements, see pp. 240-247).

Ironic to blame-the-victim accusations of Polish "intransigence" over the "reasonable" German demands to Danzig (Gdansk) and the Corridor, it was none other than Hitler who, in March 1936, had declared that Poland was too populous and too great a state to be denied access to the sea, notwithstanding the irritating fact of the pathway consisting of former Reich territory. (p. 248). In his German-bully-defying speech of May 5, 1939, Colonel Jozef Beck had pointed out that the German-Polish entanglement at Danzig had long predated the German-vilified Versailles accords, that Danzig had a German majority but also a local prosperity that was dependent upon Polish maritime commerce, and that the Corridor itself had been ancient Polish land with an insignificant percentage of German colonists. To deprive Poland of these was to deprive Poland of access to the sea--something which was intolerable to Poland's very existence. (pp. 252-253). Retinger doesn't go far enough. The smokescreen "issues" of Danzig and the Corridor actually disguised German aggressive intentions, motivated by lebensraum, which had been openly stated by Hitler in his MEIN KAMPF.
Copyright © 2009 www.internationalresearchcenter.org
Strony Internetowe webweave.pl